Children who begin kindergarten with a firm foundation will have a much easier time transitioning. While our own children never went to preschool, today many children do. I taught preschool and have seen the importance to building a firm foundation for a child so when they enter into kindergarten, they are prepared. I also spent many years as a teaching assistant in an elementary school and learned the importance of these ten simple tasks to help your child along their journey through the years at school.
1. Know their name, first and last is important. If they can write their first name that is great!
2. Have some concept of following the rules, such as being a good listener and raising your hand or waiting your turn. Teaching your child to also ask questions, just be sure to follow the rules! You must have rules at home, what are they?The teacher will share the classroom rules. When you just tell a child to BEHAVE, doesn't explain anything. Talk with your child what it means to have good behavior, this is a great place to start. Here is Let's Behave by Behavior Bear available on Amazon here.
3. Know what a book is. When I was on the Reading Team, we did assessments on the children.
Some of the things we looked for were the following:
a. Do they know where the cover of a book is?
b. Do they hold the book upright and ready to look inside?
c. Do they know what an author is?
d. If you introduce a book to your child, it's not so much reading a book as it is to 'walk' through
the story. We call this a picture walk. Ask what they see in the picture, maybe point out a word
or two before you begin the story. Read anything with and to your child as often as you can.
4. Can your child get dressed by themselves? They might not match head to toe, but it's important that they can get dressed themselves. Pull on pants, or tops are great and so are Velcro or slip on shoes until you can teach them to tie. You can help adjust their outfit afterwards.
5. Is your child independent enough to use the bathroom on their own? This helps a lot!
6. Can your child use scissors? They will be cutting a lot in kindergarten. Practice using scissors
with your child. Here are some tips. Scissors on Amazon
7. Does your child know their colors and shapes?
Most anything we see, touch, feel and taste has a color. Point this out to your child. Carrots are orange, your eyes are..and ask them about colors, too. What is your favorite food? What color is it? I can never have enough crayons to be honest! When Crayola retired the color Dandelion, my daughter bought me my own container full of them plus a life size crayon so that I would never run out! The color just makes me smile and so does she. Shape Up with Healthy Hippo is a fun and engaging way to teach your children different shapes and colors available here.
8. Can your child count to 10? Perhaps include your child in the kitchen, ask them to count out ten carrots or five lettuce leaves or two slices of bread. Showing the number correlation to the object is very helpful, too.
9. Can your child identify any letters or sounds of the letters? Try to teach them at least the first letter of their name. This is a great start!
10. How does your child transition from leaving a parent or caregiver? Please try to bring them to school knowing that you are coming back in a short while to listen to everything that they learned that day! They miss you when they're not with you. Be excited to greet them.
Starting something new is exciting, especially a new adventures into school. As a parent, naturally you want their experience to be positive and a good experience. Honestly, I always thought that if we can grab a child's enthusiasm early to want to be at school, to learn new things, to make new friend, to help others and take adventures, these years will go by quickly. Before you know it they'll be asking for the car keys! Give them a strong foundation at an early age, you'll find peace in this and your child will benefit from learning to make good choices.
Our books available on Amazon here.
Recent News Paper Articles and Books available on Amazon. Click on the pictures below.
Think about this. What does it take to motivate you? What do you need motivation for? When we feel good about ourselves, sometimes that's all the motivation one needs! However, I'd like to help you out by sharing a few links with you. Whatever your need to become motivated, you might find it here:
1. Motivation to add health and personal care to your life, click here.
2. Motivation to add Electronics to your life, click
3. Motivation to spruce up the kitchen and housewares, click here.
4.Motivation with new handbags or shoes, click here.
5.Motivation with new clothing and accessories, click here.
6. Motivation with sports and the outdoors, click here
7. Motivation with beauty, click here
8. Motivation with computers, click here.
9. Motivation with jewelry, click here.
10. Motivation with pet supplies, click here.
What motivates me? My characters do! Every day it seems a new situation arises for an opportunity to share a character message, via facebook, linkedIn, Instagram, Twitter or networking in the community. However, my greatest motivation is the faith that I have, for I believe there is a purpose for my passion and the Good Lord is guiding me along my path.
This is a recent newspaper article written on the Characters of Character and you can learn more about us on our website, through our children's books and be sure to check our calendar to see if we are doing an activity near you. Stay MOTIVATED! PLEASE CONSIDER CHARACTERS OF CHARACTER AS YOUR CHARITY WHEN SHOPPING THROUGH AMAZON. THANK YOU.
A visit to a local library was a lesson learned. While talking with the children before the story was to take place, there a young boy, probably about 9 or 10 who made it physically clear that he did not want to be there by distractedly sitting on the floor. He began to share with me that he does not like painting, painting is messy, and that he would rather be writing or drawing something. Well, in this teachable moment, I did share that he could write a letter to any of the Characters of Character at anytime and they would write back to him. They love getting mail. I shared with the parents to do this with their children. Then, I reassured him that painting was not messy, we were going to have fun! He proceeded to the table to paint to only want to stand on the chair or sit on it backwards. I finally got him to stand and begin to paint. However, he did want to make sure that I knew loud and clear that he was not happy about being at the event. It saddened me that he didn't want to be in the class. Still, he did finish his painting, and did a very nice job on it! He also left me a message on the paper plate which was used as our palet for paint. Check out the picture below. "I did not want to paint" I was so very pleased and proud that he not only finished painting, and hope that he was proud of himself for completing the project and following through, even though he had the last word!
Making a difference one child at a time. I think it worked out just fine!
I chose to focus on Manners Monkey. First, I read the story, "I Am Manners Monkey" had a discussion with the children and then we brought the character to life on canvas and afterwards they got to meet the one and only, Manners Monkey! During the class I ask parents to complete a very short survey on the event, this helps me learn if what I'm doing is working and if the parents will follow through with the packet of ideas that I share at each class. This way the child is exposed to learning about the character trait and also followed up with it at home. Win!
Check out the nice email I had when I got home from this event:
Dear Ms. Downey,
" Super thanks for the great program you gave to all kids at Vernon Area Public Library today! My daughter learnt a lot and cannot stop discussing with me topics of good manners on our way home. She also asked me how to say all polite words in our native language. And she just hung the manners chart on her room. I really appreciate all positive inputs you promoted."
Making a difference one child at a time. I think it worked out just fine!
Think about it. How do you learn as an adult? How do you internalize your new topic of interest?
I'll be honest here, I have to be hands on, I'm not much of a reader. I learn by doing. I learn by observing and by trying to do something new. That's how I myself learn. Think about your child for a moment. When they hear, "clean your room"......"clean your room"......clean your room" that is all they hear. When you say, "after your room is clean we can go to the park, you know your clean room makes me proud to see you taking responsibility of your belongings and your space." Some kind of explanation on any situations goes a long way.
When you say to a child, BEHAVE!.....BEHAVE!.....BEHAVE!....what does it mean to behave? As adults we need to explain things to children, we need to be role models and we need to be a positive influence in their daily lives. Tell your child what you expect from them as far as good behavior. Nobody wants to be 'nagged' all the time, as a child or as an adult.
So, get creative with your kids! Laugh....Love.....Live
Check out a recent newspaper article on the Characters of Character. My creativity is in bringing the characters to life on canvas!